When you are used to being on mains power it is easy to lose sight of just how much energy is being consumed on a daily basis, it’s no wonder that people often don’t think much about sustainability. That was me and my Beloved a scant few weeks ago, since then we have been experiencing problems with our power supply and ended up with some nights where we had no power at all and therefore the fridge was off all night. I was a bit wound up about our upcoming wedding over a couple of days when the trouble started and the situation meant that I ended up getting even more wound up! You know that being relaxed would be a better way to navigate but being without power seems to trigger a very deep response of primal fear and helplessness.
Not having lights isn’t so bad and we love candles but when you are full of anxious tension it is hard to appreciate the gentle romanticism of candle light. I truly get now the way in which having a fridge that will keep our food cold is quite possibly the epitome of civilisation. Certainly I now have a much better sense of how much power is being used every day in houses all over this country. And while it has been challenging I am still glad to be living apart from that profligate system that is operating with old, dirty technology. It is also an opportunity to learn about sustainable practices which I am quite sure will be useful learning for our future.
Our time in the dark has put us a tad behind with wedding preparations but it is all coming along very nicely and I’m starting to get excited! So out of the darkness and into the light of day, sounds very much like our wedding themes which are all about bringing the dark and the light together. So the next time I post I will be a Mrs but don’t expect anything next week as I will most likely have a little break from this blog. Farewell as I enter into a wonderful new chapter, aho!
In Western culture we have little left in the way of ritual in our lives and when we do engage in some kind of ceremony the deeper meaning is often lost in the race to spend money and look good. A wedding is not just a chance to have a great party although that is certainly an important aspect. It is also an opportunity for people to come together in community, to connect and in many cases re-connect after long periods of separation. My Beloved and I are particularly looking forward to the eclectic mix that will be the selection of folk coming to help us celebrate our sacred union.
We’ve already started the process of connecting with community by having an art and craft day yesterday where we made lots of paper flowers to decorate the hall in the spirit of the Mexican Day of the Dead. I never realised how easy it is to make beautiful flowers with just crepe paper, pipe cleaners and a pair of scissors. At the end of the day one of my friends made the flowers into big bunches and we hung them all up on the back of a cane bookcase. At this point I am really wishing that we had a camera to take a picture of this amazing riot of colour. So the end result of our efforts was truly captivating but even more wonderful the energy created by a bunch of people coming together to engage in creative play and conversation.
All of this lovely energy will be a part of our wedding day along with the actual physical flowers and will help to create a feeling of happy harmony. Sounds like the perfect atmosphere for an event that will be celebrating relationship as a spiritual practice. And of course in relationship as in life, there is always the shadow as well as the bright, cheery light that we all love. That will be represented by our co-celebrant who will be in black symbolising death and chaos, while the other celebrant will be in white representing life and order. It is so important to have ways of navigating the dark and difficult times in relationship yet this is something that is often ignored in modern society. So when the sweetness is swept away by black thunderstorms people end up projecting their stuff on to each other and the next thing you know they are in the divorce court.
The alternative is to hang in there and support each other through the difficult times even if you sometimes have no idea what is going on. Your darling is in the depths of depression and there is nothing you can say that will help, well maybe being silent is how you can be supportive. Or simply holding each other without words and letting your bodies do the talking, gaining reassurance from physical contact. If you can stay with the process you will find your relationship deepening as you become even closer. With every challenge and obstacle on our path my Beloved and I have become closer and closer and every day I love him a little bit more. Ain’t love grand!
The peace and quiet continue as I am still without a phone and a decent internet connection, but apparently my noise is bigger! My long suffering Beloved has let me know that since I got disconnected from all that technology I am chattering even more than usual. And here I thought I was doing so well coping with not being able to connect at the drop of a hat! Luckily I am in a conscious relationship where we communicate very thoughtfully and my darling was able to let me know what he was experiencing. Even when you are considerate and take responsibility for yourself it can feel dreadful when hearing of how another is experiencing your energy. But without that communication there are just these feelings that no-one is acknowledging and sooner or later there is probably going to be some kind of conflict.
Simply acknowledging and naming your feelings is a big step towards being happier and more resilient and is something that has been understood by mystics for centuries. Test it out for yourself some time when you are having a reaction to something or someone that isn’t immediately identifiable. Notice the level of your distress and give it a number on a scale of 1-10 with 10 being most distressed and 1 not distressed at all. Then as you sit quietly bring your awareness to wherever you are experiencing the feelings or sensations and try to be present to whatever is going on for you. Once you have been able to find a label for what you are feeling sit with that thought for a bit and then check in again on the level of your distress. There’s a pretty good chance you will notice a big difference the second time around.
I’ve posted this link before and here it is again, what neuroscience can tell us about being happy!
This is all very wonderful but I will be really, really HAPPY to have a phone again! There is a lot said about the dangers of technology but it is so easy to stay in touch in our modern world and CONNECTION is a key element in happiness too. If you read the article above you will note that they talk about connection through touch, a basic need that we all share. Well I’m a wealthy woman when it comes to physical touch but this time without all the usual technology is showing me that all the other kinds of connecting are important too. So bring on that new phone, my dearest darling Beloved will be as happy as I am to see me fully connected back in to my wonderful community!
So the constant sea of change has brought my Beloved and I to live in a wooden cottage in the middle of national forest, off the grid and close to nature. We’ve had five nights and I am in love with this new lifestyle already! At the same time as landing here my phone has suddenly decided it doesn’t want to charge anymore and the wi fi is so intermittent it only works occasionally. It was a long weekend and so I had to let go of technology and the outside world and focus on settling in to our new home, to feel the wonderful space of nature unbridled. In the face of the trees and the birds and the distant views of the Glasshouse Mountains it was difficult to be concerned about my ailing phone, trust and patience seem to come more easily in this clean air.
I can already feel a deeper peace and calm within me after being in that sacred space over the long weekend. If I can continue to bring my awareness to this part of me then the myriad tasks of planning a wedding will happen with grace and ease and no fuss! Our new home feels like somewhere we can be highly creative as we recharge our batteries and prepare to go out into the world bearing rainbows and poetry. My Beloved’s paintings are once again all around us on the walls and that is a great inspiration in itself. Soon we will be hosting an art and craft day where we’ll be making decorations in the theme of the Mexican Day of the Dead, and perhaps I can get some assistance in distressing my op shop wedding dress.
The old Kerry would be freaking out right now but that part of me is nowadays represented by a slight feeling of dis-ease in my belly. She is still there and sometimes her fears come up and engulf me with disquiet and foreboding. But the larger part can observe this as it happens and allow the feelings to flow without being sucked into the current. And the so-called anxiety provoking circumstances resolve themselves as they always have, the knowledge that this is so comes from a growing sense of trust. Having a stable home will assist greatly in being able to navigate the next few weeks and I would like to express my deep gratitude and appreciation to Spirit which has brought us to this wonderful space in the bush. May I be well, may others be well…..aho!